Safeguard Your Memory with This Snack
Fend off a future with Alzheimer's by having a handful of these for your afternoon snack: sunflower seeds.
They're too tasty to be relegated to bird food. And too nutritious! Among other goodies, these little seeds are loaded with vitamin E, a nutrient that may help protect against memory-stealing Alzheimer's disease.
The E Advantage
In a study, those who reported getting the highest amount of vitamin E -- 19 milligrams a day -- were about 25 percent less likely to be diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer's disease over a 10-year period. People in the study got much of their vitamin E from processed or sat-fat foods, like butter, margarine, and mayo. Our suggestion? Get your E from healthy sources, such as nuts, seeds, veggies, plant oils, and nut butters. The bonus with nuts and seeds is that you also get a shot of hunger-quelling protein. Not to mention some heart-healthy fats. (Find out what other foods are rich in vitamin E.)
Mechanics of a Memory Keeper
Vitamin E helps protect cells against oxidative damage, a helpful thing when it comes to foiling the onset and development of dementia and Alzheimer's. Animal research also suggests that E may help inhibit the negative effects of beta-amyloid -- a type of protein fragment that turns into Alzheimer's-triggering brain plaques. (Are you at risk for Alzheimer's? Take this assessment to find out.)